Trump-appointed judge strikes down FDA approval of abortion pill mifepristone

A far-right judge in Texas has issued a long-awaited ruling, striking down the Food and Drug Administration's approval of mifepristone for abortions.

Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, an appointee of President Donald Trump, has stayed his ruling for seven days to give the federal government time to appeal the decision to the Fifth Circuit.

The case was brought by right-wing groups arguing that the approval process for the drug did not fully evaluate the safety and effectiveness of the drug. Among other things, Kacsmaryk ruled that the FDA failed to evaluate the "psychological trauma" that medication abortion could cause to women.

Doctors have broadly disputed any claims that the drug is not safe or effective.

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The ruling, if allowed to go into effect, would suspend the ability of mifepristone to be prescribed for abortions, even in states where abortion and specifically medication abortion are legal. Women seeking abortions through this method would now have to use surgical abortion instead, or else rely solely on misoprostol, another drug generally used in tandem with the drug.

The Justice Department broadly expected the ruling, and will almost certainly move forward with appeal.